Pinoy’s hair and nation’s problems

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Tuesday, March 4, 2014


“IF a man’s hair falls out from his head, he is bald; he is clean.”
--Leviticus 13:40

WHEN President Noynoy Aquino told Filipino overseas foreign workers in Kuala Lumpur last Feb. 28 that his hair "continues to vanish due to enormous problems he inherited" from his predecessor Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (GMA), it wasn't the first time he used the joke.

Last March 18, before graduates of Philippine Military Academy (PMA) in Baguio City, he also complained of losing hair and growing eye-bags which made him, he said, look older. He didn't mention GMA; he just said running the country did it.

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But last October, PNoy blamed GMA for hair loss and for other woes as well: the dip in his popularity rating and, ah, the earthquake.

One may ask which draws louder cheer from his audience: losing hair or bashing GMA. Apparently both.

Like the maybe-a-local-girl-for-this-bachelor-president line he used to tuck into his speeches in Cebu, Iloilo, Davao and other places, the hair-loss thing never fails to get laughter and applause.

The joke isn't totally at his expense. While he pokes fun at his diminishing hair, PNoy in the same breath bashes GMA and obliquely depicts himself as a hard worker who sacrifices good looks for service of country and people.

DNA or GMA

Never mind that Freeman's Jerry Tundag believes more in the force of genes than the stress of being president. Whatever the culprit in hair-loss, PNoy's DNA or the baggage left by GMA, neither the standup joke nor the blame game will last.

His speechwriters must tap other sources of mirth for PNoy's audience and, in allocating fault, he has to start looking at himself too.

[paseares@gmail.com]

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 04, 2014.

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